If you're a vegetarian or vegan this is your restaurant in Cancun, and even if you're not, you should still give Vegan Planet a try. Chef Miguel Bautista not only prepares amazing food completely free of animal components but also incorporates many superfoods and gives classes on how to prepare healthy, delicious vegan and raw dishes. The entire menu is vegan and many of the dishes are raw and include sushi, pastas, pizza, smoothies, sandwiches and Mexican favorites like chilaquiles, burritos, and molletes. For dessert, try a scrumptious brownie. The prices are very economical. They are open Mon-Sat 8 am-6 pm.
Recommended for Lunch because: Vegan Planets offers scrumptious dishes sans animal products. The only vegan in Cancun.
Kristin's expert tip: This restaurant is quite far from the Hotel Zone, so take a bus downtown and then grab a taxi.
Le Natura is located in the heart of the Hotel Zone across the street from the old Senor Frogs, but once you enter this lush, green environment you'll forget that you are in one of the busiest areas of Cancun. They have an extensive menu geared towards fresh, healthy eating and many vegetarian dishes available for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The prices are very reasonable, try the breakfast combos or the lunch/dinner combos. The fresh juices and smoothies are a highlight but don't despair, Le Natura also serves beer, margaritas, daiquiris, etc. etc. This is a restaurant that you may want to visit more than once during your stay.
Recommended for Lunch because: Le Natura serves reasonably priced dishes made from natural ingredients.
Kristin's expert tip: Make your way towards the back of the restaurant to sit closer to the beach.
This tiny, open-air restaurant is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and they are always serving delicious food. Any time, day or night, you can order made-to-order burritos and tacos, nachos, taco salads, quesadillas, ceviche, and a few appetizers. After 11:30am, they fire up the grill and start serving barbecue beef ribs, hamburgers, barbecue garlic chicken, jerk chicken, and grilled chicken wings. There is also a full bar, so you can get a beer or cocktail at any hour. For breakfast, there are no traditional American breakfast favorites offered, but they do serve breakfast burritos and tacos, which have spicy Mexican sausage and beans inside them. It's a tasty option for breakfast so don't knock it until you try it. This place has low prices, with most dishes coming in at well under $100 pesos (so less than $10 US dollars). The breakfast burritos and tacos are $49 pesos, which is quite a bargain, since the burritos are huge.
Recommended for Lunch because: The Surfin Burrito is beloved by both tourists and locals because of it's casual vibe, large portions and tempting drinks.
Susan's expert tip: All seating is outdoors so be sure to wear sunscreen on sunny days and take an umbrella or raincoat on rainy days because you will be exposed to the elements here.
El Galeon del Caribe aka Las Pescadillas, is a rustic (to say the least) hidden treasure in Cancun's Hotel Zone. Tucked in between the mangroves on Nichupte Lagoon at km 19.4 of Kukulcan Boulevard (across the street from the GR Solaris Cancun) Las Pescadillas, is essentially chairs and tables under a palapa, but they serve the yummiest, freshest pescadillas (fried corn tortillas stuffed with fish) around. They also serve delicious ceviche, garlic shrimp, soft drinks, cold cerveza and more. This is traditional, authentic Mexican seafood at its best, and the price can't be beat. Oh, and there's no dress code.
Recommended for Lunch because: El Galeon del Caribe serves up traditional Mexican "street" food in the most casual and authentic atmosphere.
Kristin's expert tip: Order 2 o 3 pescadillas. One won't be enough.
There are many restaurants on the lagoon in Cancun, but Mocambo is one of the few oceanfront eateries in town. Located right next to Playa Caracol, a popular public beach, Mocambo serves up some of Cancun's best seafood. Open for lunch and dinner, guests may order from the menu or opt for the seafood buffet, which is available several times a week. The dining area is open-air and covered with a large palapa (thatched roof). There are gorgeous views of the island of Isla Mujeres off in the distance, as well as of the lighthouse which is located a short distance away on the property of Dreams Cancun Resort & Spa. Prices at Mocambo are quite reasonable and the service is good. Most importantly, the food is delicious.
Recommended for Lunch because: Mocambo serves seafood and the best lunchtime views in the Hotel Zone.
Susan's expert tip: If you want a front row view of the Caribeean Sea, make a reservation. The tables with the best views fill up quickly.
Los de Pescado's menu is very small, but the economical items they serve are out of this world. This is a local's favorite, with locations all over downtown Cancun. This is great take-out food that reheats well and they even deliver! Menu items include fish or shrimp tacos, ceviche or ceviche tostadas, and fish or shrimp burritos. Have an ice cold beer or "agua natural" with your lunch or dinner and do not miss the spicy white mayonnaise-based dressing.
Recommended for Lunch because: Locals love Los de Pescado because it's cheap and the fish tacos (and everything else they serve) are delicious.
Kristin's expert tip: An order of tacos is two tacos, so order two if you want four!
This is one of the best places in Cancun to go for a sandwich. Fresh baguettes or croissants are piled high with meats, cheeses, and vegetables. The garlic mayonnaise served on these sandwiches makes them highly addictive. The restaurant opens early, for breakfast, and stays open until 10:00 pm. At most times of the day, there is usually a crowd of people waiting near the counter to pick up get their take-out order. Breakfast offerings (only in some locations) consist of croissants, boiled eggs, coffee, cappuccino, espresso, hot chocolate, tea, fruit juice, or sandwiches. The most popular item on the menu is the Economica, an economically priced baguette sandwich. The sandwich consists of salami, cheese and peppers on a baguette. Other popular items are the Italian Sandwich and the Vegetarian Sandwich is an option for diners that don't eat meat. If you prefer your sandwich on a croissant instead of on a baguette, croissants can be substituted for a few pesos more. The delicious food and the low prices make this place a huge hit with locals and tourists alike.
Recommended for Lunch because: Ty-Coz is delicious and inexpensive. It's a local favorite.
Susan's expert tip: Try the Italian sandwich. It's one of the best things on the menu. If you are penny-pinching, opt for the inexpensive, yet tasty Economica sandwich instead.
This casual seafood restaurant is located smack in the middle of the Hotel Zone but it's also a local favorite. El Fish Fritanga is open daily from 11 am to 11 pm but their taco stand is open from 7 am until 1 am. This is a great spot for a family meal. They have high chairs and a changing station available and an outdoor kids play area. Prices on their menu range from 10 to 200 pesos (USD: 75 cents to 15 dollars). They are located on the lagoon so you'll enjoy a lovely view. They have all this to offer plus their food is delicious. Try the ceviche or fish tacos with a frosty chelada (prepared beer drink).
Recommended for Lunch because: El Fish Fritanga offers reasonable prices, yummy food and a lovely location on the lagoon.
Kristin's expert tip: El Fish Fritanga delivers in the Hotel Zone so if you feel like staying in one night, have them bring dinner to your doorstep.
Blue Gecko Cantina is a tiny little restaurant with a palapa roof and a neon sign, located at kilometer 16 of Boulevard Kukulcan on the lagoon side of the street in Cancun's Hotel Zone. The place may be small, but the tacos are huge. The mixed or frozen margaritas, daiquiris and mojitos are to die for. All food and drinks are created with fresh ingredients. A friendly waitstaff and lively, casual atmosphere make Blue Gecko Cantina a great place to grab a bite along with a few cocktails. You'll probably find yourself staying late and visiting more than once during your Cancun vacation.
Recommended for Lunch because: Blue Gecko Cantina serves creative, delicious food and drinks at economical prices.
Kristin's expert tip: If you can't wait until lunch for tacos, Blue Gecko Cantina serves them at breakfast.
This beautifully decorated restaurant has lots of windows, with excellent views of the pool and the turquoise waters of the Caribbean Sea. Open for breakfast and lunch, diners may order from the menu or enjoy an elaborate buffet with hot and cold dishes. During breakfast service, there is a Belgian waffle station and an omelette station, in addition to the large assortment of other dishes. Lox and bagels, fresh fruit, pastries, and traditional breakfast favorites, like bacon and eggs, are served on the buffet, alongside Mexican dishes, like refried beans, taquitos, and chilaquiles.
Recommended for Lunch because: El Cafe Mexicano is located in the Ritz-Carlton and let's face it, it doesn't get much better than the Ritz.
Susan's expert tip: Dine outdoors, on the terrace, so you don't miss a minute of Cancun's gorgeous, sunny days.